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Singing Psalm 25 for close friendship

What is it like to have close friendship?

When you find it, you think, “Where have you been all my life?”

“To You I lift my soul;

    LORD God, in You I trust.

Do not let me suffer shame;

    And let my foes not boast.

Yes, those who wait on You

    No shame will ever see;

Let shame be theirs who without cause

    Behave with treachery.” ~ Psalm 25:1-3

Immerse your thoughts in close friendship with God and everything else falls in line. You love him because he hears you better than anyone else could. He loves you first and better than you know. What flows from this humble trust and reliance is peace that passes understanding and joy that no one can take away from you. The Lord helps you grow into whatever he has for your life, a life that is pleasing in his sight. You wait on him to show you who you are. “Yea, let none that wait on Thee be ashamed.”*

Having close friendship with one you can trust quiets the noise from the many competing voices and brings that one voice to the fore. That’s the voice you listen to and are loyal to. That’s where you place your allegiance. 

Singing Psalm 25 for close friendship that releases your shame

“Guard and protect my life;    Save and deliver me!O let me not be put to shame,    In You my trust will be.” ~ Psalm 25:20

Close friendship with the Lord turns nagging insecurities into confident peace.

Be intentional to not judge another for the troubles you see that they have, as Job’s friends would have been better off not to have done. Make a concerted effort not to compare your troubles with those of another. Each person‘s troubles are tailor made.

I sing the psalms because they put me in touch with God in close friendship that nothing else ever has. He’s the one who’ll talk you off the ledge every time. God’s the one who makes you comfortable in your own skin, and that should be no surprise—he’s the one who gave it to you after all.

One of the most beautiful things about close friendship with the Lord is that you don’t ever have to feel like you’re walking on eggshells, although you are always aware of the wonder of getting to be with one so great that you are not cavalier in the relationship by any means. When you are respectfully honest from the heart, you can speak freely with him as Moses did, and never worry that your words will be misconstrued, or that you will be rejected because of something you said. The Lord is also kind enough to help you with your communication with him so that you can be holy as he is holy in it, and yet as real and as free as two beings can be with one another.

The problem with shame isn’t so much bad feelings, or even in feeling like less than others, but it’s the repercussions that come from it, the rejection and separation in relationships that can result when you feel shame because you tend to isolate yourself and stay away from others. Close friendship with the Lord precludes this rejection. Close friendship with God in Christ releases you from your shame by removing the wall of separation, eliminating the barrier between you and him. This joy of oneness is indescribable and inexpressible especially when juxtaposed to other relationships that have become strained and distant, void of forgiveness and reconciliation.

The more you have chosen to listen to voices other than that of your good shepherd, the harder it becomes to turn those off to abide with Jesus. Though your sin and others’ sins might have brought you shame, when you are not ashamed to come to him for help, he is not only not ashamed to abide with you, he delights in it! When you fear him, which is to revere and worship him, the close friendship you have with your maker will keep you from straying or, having strayed, lead you back to his sheepfold.

“Instruct me in Your paths;

    LORD, make me know Your way.

Teach me and make me follow You,

    That in Your truth I’ll stay;

Since You have been my God,

    The One who rescues me,

For You I’m waiting all the day;

    I wait expectantly.” ~ Psalm 25:4-5

Singing Psalm 25 for close friendship that guides you

You will never regret close friendship with the Lord. It will astound you how real and rich it continues to grow and how deeply pleasurable it is to be in a relationship where you know your master’s business and to be about his business rather than your own. When he shows you knowledge of his covenant, you learn that his business greatly involves you developing close friendship with others that point them also to close friendship with the master, the Lord Jesus, by his Spirit, the way to the Father. His relational covenant endures. It’s not fly by night. It lasts throughout your lives extending for generations to come. Nothing could be better!

    “Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD,        the fruit of the womb a reward.    Like arrows in the hand of a warrior        are the children of one’s youth.    Blessed is the man        who fills his quiver with them!    He shall not be put to shame        when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.” ~ Psalm 127:3-5

He guides you to learn how to disagree without separating yourself from those you disagree with, and to take needed space from a relationship without severing the relationship. God helps you learn how to disagree without a trace of bitterness. 

Close friendship with the Lord is a protective shield around your heart because he holds it in his care. You are able to love others more without getting carried away, without anyone else having a hold on you that would give them dominion over you as if in a stranglehold. No one can snatch you out of Jesus’ hand. It’s close friendship with the Lord that provides proper boundaries in your relationships with others. He is your safe, happy place, your protective guardrail, the fence that keeps you secure in his loving grip. Close friendship with God protects you not from but to rightly have close friendship with others. One mark of maturity is “if all men count with you but none too much.”

“My sinfulness is great,

    And great, O LORD, my blame;

O pardon, my iniquity,

    To glorify Your name.

To him who fears the LORD

    The path to choose is shown.

His soul will have prosperity;

    The land his seed will own.” ~ Psalm 25:11–13

What breaks me up about close friendship with Jesus is not the extremely obvious power differential between us. But it’s that he wants close friendship with me and would love me to his hurt to have it. That alone is what cuts through my thick pride and melts my heart. 

When first appearing to Moses, God identifies himself as “I am” or “I will be” as in “I will be with you.” The Lord humbles himself to care for his people, and Moses reflects his humility. Though Jesus’ disciples witnessed him momentarily transfigured in glory talking with Moses and Elijah, they mostly saw the Word become flesh to humbly live among humans. And they learned, over time, to listen to him.

He leads you in a similar fashion to be humble which frees you up and relieves you of the pressure of having to be the expert, to always have the answer, to always know what’s coming. Instead, you can happily admit when you don’t know a thing, no longer charging those who ask you questions you can’t answer with the “crime” of causing you to lose face. In seeking the humble face of Jesus, you gladly let go of your face of pride so that you have nothing to lose.

“The LORD is good, and just;

    The way He’ll sinners show.

He guides the meek in what is just,

    That they His path will know.

To those who keep His word,

    His covenant obey,

The lovingkindness of the LORD

    And truth will be their way.” ~ Psalm 25:8-10

God will show you what to do. God will show you how to proceed and when. Jesus no longer calls you servant but now calls you friend.

“Look on my grief and pain,    Forgiving all my sin.See how my enemies increase,    How fierce their hate has been.” ~ Psalm 25:18-19

Singing Psalm 25 puts you in a frame to follow Jesus whom you can’t see in close friendship, closer by far than with those who are visible to you. The time we have here is to be lived to please God. Though you don’t see him, you love him.

These days you can “follow” countless numbers of people online and even engage with people in person in transitory relationships. Consider the eternal vs. the temporary, the unseen vs. the seen. Make wise use of the time you have as a precursor to the eternal. Part of training yourself to be godly includes acclimating your mind to build lasting relationships in preparation for eternity.

You make it your aim to trust in God’s goodness. When you catch yourself thinking about the Lord and you take stock of your thoughts of him, does it reveal an accurate picture of how he gives with abundant kindness? Or do you see him as a hard, stingy master who scarcely gives?

What rebuttal will you make to correct the latter view if indeed it is the one you most closely hold in your heart about God?

“And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” ~ Hebrews 11:6

“Your tender mercies, LORD,   Your steadfast love recall,For these are things that have endured    Throughout the ages all.My youthful sins, my faults,    Do not bring these to mind;O  LORD, remember me in love,    For You are good and kind.” ~ Psalm 25:6-7

If you have defiled your body, remember that God made your body good, and that he is good, kind, and forgiving. If others have violated your body, the Lord sees and will vindicate you in his perfect timing. You do all you can to make sure that person comes to justice so that he or she will not have further opportunities to violate you or anyone else. You ask the Lord to help them also to fear him in godly sorrow leading to repentance and close friendship with him, that they would find his gracious presence and forgiveness.

“Close friendship with the LORD    Will all who fear Him know;The knowledge of His covenant    He unto them will show.My eyes upon the LORD    Continually are set;For He it is that shall bring forth    My feet out of the net.” ~ Psalm 25:14-15

Singing Psalm 25 for close friendship that redeems you from all trouble

What will it take to convince you that the Lord is God and there is no other? It took 10 plagues in Egypt, but what if they turned course before all of that was necessary? The Lord was merciful to make a clear distinction between Aaron’s staff, and the staffs of the magicians of Egypt, all of which became serpents.

“But Aaron’s staff swallowed up their staffs.” ~ Exodus 7:12b

Wouldn’t that be evidence enough that the Lord not only had the power to do these signs, but that he also has mastery and authority over them? A soft heart would have listened to the Lord and would have averted all of the plagues rendering them as unnecessary. Close friendship with the Lord ensures that whatever trouble you have is trouble you will be delivered from. Whatever trouble you have is necessary to bring about good for those who love God and who want to glorify him.

Take heart that Jesus has overcome the world. The Lord promises to repay the years that the locusts have eaten. His covenant on redemption from all your troubles is sure.

And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” ~ Revelation 21:3-4

“Be gracious, turn to me,Desolate and oppressed.The troubles of my heart have grown;    Relieve me from distress.Since I upon you wait    Let truth and right defend.Redemption, God, for Israel    From all his troubles send.” ~ Psalm 25:16-17, 21-22

March 30, 2022 – February 2, 2024

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